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Lesson Plans

Re: Coloring Books: another opinion

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bryan (rekcets)
Sat, 22 Nov 1997 23:02:11 -0800

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I agree with you. My children enjoyed coloring books and also using
blank paper. They are both very creative and artistic. The art cart
that was part of our kitchen during their early years was stocked with
all kinds of paper, supplies and coloring books.

Moderation is the key.


David Zimmerman wrote:
> I think its interesting how this coloring book issue keeps resurfacing on
> this list over time. No one seems to ride the fence on it--you either
> think they're okay or you hate them for reasons already stated on this
> list. My training as an artist and arts educator emphasized the big "C"
> word--creativity--and suggested that predrawn images squelched it. As a
> working artist, I squirmed whenever I saw kids coloring another artist's
> drawings.
> However, my experience with children both at home and at school has
> suggested otherwise. For whatever reason, some children find it extremely
> enjoyable to sit and color in books. I'm beginning to think this has
> nothing to do with art or personal expression. These are adult labels.
> Kids find coloring relaxing. A sense of satisfaction and completion
> results for many as they complete a page. It might have more to do with
> temperment and meeting personal needs for relaxation.
> My niece, who is seven, often pulls out a coloring book when she needs to
> amuse herself or wants a quiet activity. She also loves to paint and draw
> her own extensive reptoire of images. These two projects don't seem to be
> related and one doesn't seem to get in the way of the other. I just asked
> her what the difference was between these two activities. She said she
> saves her drawings for special occasions like making a birthday card or
> picture for someone. Obviously she realizes that her own images are more
> valuable and are like giving a piece of herself. She says the people who
> make the coloring books can draw "better" than she can, but it doesn't seem
> to be stunting her growth or interest in making her own pictures. I think
> children become disinterested in art because of their developmental phase
> (as suggested by Lowenfield) as well as lack of art classes in schools.
> Coloring is a bit like knitting or whittling wood, I suppose. Maybe kids
> who like to color are the ones who grow up organizing their closets or
> sorting their socks by color. Maybe its an area where left and right brain
> can meet comfortably.
> Deb Rosenbaum
> The Surgeon's Motto: "Never say 'oops!', always say 'there!'

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